Honoring the land of the free and the home of the brave
Read a message from Raymond James and Valor, our Veterans Inclusion Network, as we celebrate Independence Day.
Raymond James and Valor, our Veterans Inclusion Network, recognizes the sacrifices military members, veterans and their families make for our nation. Particularly on this historic day – Independence Day – we honor the land of the free and the home of the brave.
A message from Raymond James and Valor:
For many, Independence Day is celebrated with parades, fireworks and barbeques with family and friends. We look forward to these festivities each year, as it offers a time for us to express our patriotism while making memories with our families and friends.
Equally important, it offers us an opportunity to honor and reflect on the significance of this day in our nation’s history, particularly to those who have protected – and continue to protect – our nation’s freedom: those within our own veterans networks (Valor and Veteran Financial Advisors Network) and all members of the military community.
What was marked 247 years ago with the signing of the Declaration of Independence has been, and must be continuously preserved by the ongoing sacrifices of our military community.
It is in that spirit that we at Raymond James humbly thank the members of our veterans networks and all who serve(d) on this day, our nation’s Independence Day.
On behalf of the firm, wishing you and your family a safe and happy Independence Day.
Andy Zolper, Valor Executive Sponsor
Steven LaBarbera, Valor National Co-Chair
Edward Sudzina, Valor National Co-Chair
Mercy Ameyaw, Valor Co-Chair
Courtney Wallen, Valor Co-Chair
Explore ways Raymond James, associates and advisors honor our military community and veterans all year long:
Supporting associates and advisors
Valor, the Veterans Inclusion Network, is open to all associates – whether they are veterans themselves, military family members or those who support service members. Acutely aware that veterans often face challenges as they transition back to civilian life or continue service through the National Guard and the Army Reserve, our firm has created a network of professionals that can support, develop and promote the unique skill sets of veterans throughout Raymond James.
Raymond James is proud to be a Military Spouse Employment (MSEP) Partner. A central goal of the Military Spouse (“MilSpo”) program is to connect military spouse associates at Raymond James. This includes spouses of active duty service members and spouses of retired or former service members.
Launched in 2022, our Veteran Financial Advisors Network (VFAN) is dedicated to supporting armed services veterans in the development of their businesses and careers, and in helping other veterans and military family members discover a challenging, rewarding career that plays to their strengths.
The Advisor Mastery Program (AMP) is committed to helping change the face of financial services through its recruitment and support of advisors whose traits and distinct experiences will add to the diversity of voices that make our firm stronger. A 24-month training program, AMP is designed to engage new advisors, educate them, facilitate conversations in the classroom and in their branches with managers and mentors, and hold trainees accountable as they grow into their practices.
Learn how AMP helped three advisors who are military veterans set up their careers as financial advisors for success.
Building a sense of community
Raymond James Affordable Housing Investments (AHI) is a leading provider of high-quality affordable housing developments throughout the nation, including those focused on further supporting the military and veteran communities.
Located in St. Petersburg, Florida, Duval Park (pictured right) is a $17 million affordable, permanent and supported housing community. This 88-unit development offers long-term leases to veterans, with an emphasis on veterans with service-connected disabilities.
This 10-acre site includes gated entry to 15 garden-style buildings, four two-story homes and a community building with a handicap-accessible swimming pool. Boley Centers and ServiceSource provide a full-time staff along with supportive services such as job placement, education opportunities, temporary financial assistance, family support and transportation.
Bear Creek Commons
With nearly $12 million of equity and $2.8 million of debt provided by Raymond James Bank, Bear Creek Commons in St. Petersburg, and will consist of 47 one-bedroom units and 38 two-bedroom units, with a preference to veterans.
The development will provide resident services which include 24-hour support to assist residents, a resident assurance check-in program, adult literacy classes, and assistance with light housekeeping, grocery shopping, and laundry.
CHS Shoreline, currently under construction, is a 100-unit modular, new construction, family/senior/permanent supportive housing property in Shoreline, Washington.
Approximately 14 minutes north of Seattle, the development features 40 units allotted to serve local veterans, seniors or human services levy eligible populations.
Honoring veterans through art
We believe that art has the power to reflect our thoughts and the world around us, as well as connect us to one another – both at our firm and throughout our communities.
Through their patronage, Tom and Mary James have supported the success and helped share the stories of veteran artists such as Greg Beecham, Dan Namingha, Kim Wiggins and many others.
Learn more about their work by visiting their websites or scheduling an art tour at our home office.
Serving those who served
In conjunction with RJ Cares, many associates and advisors have volunteered for Honor Flights in their local areas. The flights provide veterans a day trip to Washington, D.C., to visit memorials dedicated to honoring their sacrifices, followed by a “Welcome Home” party upon their arrival back.
“Our sole job from the start of the day to the end was to take exceptional care of our veterans,” said associate Karen Chappel. “We carried their bags, made sure they were comfortable, made it on and off the bus/plane, served as personal photographers, etc. Most importantly, we got to know them. The experience touched us all very deeply and we look forward to participating again.”
“For many veterans, this was the welcome home they did not receive at their time of service,” said Fran Carman of Branch 35C. “ While we were there to serve these men and women, we were moved by the many comments from interacting with the veterans and their families. They were so appreciative and humble for the opportunity to go on this flight, which is free of charge to the veterans.”
“What an incredible experience,” added associate Daniel Cole, pictured here.